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SKMC Family Doctor Symposium To Advance Community Healthcare
(25 June 2013)
Abu Dhabi Hospital to Identify Best-Practice for General Practitioners in Capital


Delivering faster and more accurate general medical treatment in the community through better healthcare practice is the aim of a doctors’ symposium being held in Abu Dhabi on 28 June 2013.

The General Practitioner (GP) and Family Practice Symposium is being organised by Dr Nigel Beejay and a group of senior physicians based in Abu Dhabi for Sheikh Khalifa Medical City (SKMC), an entity managed by Cleveland Clinic. The Symposium aims to identify the optimum mechanisms of care for some of the most common problems encountered by GPs practicing medicine in the UAE.

As opposed to most of their hospital-based colleagues, GPs and family doctors see patients of all ages, and, unlike medical or surgical specialised doctors working as internists in a hospital setting, GPs also tend to practice a holistic approach that takes into consideration the social environment in which patients live, meaning that diagnosis of symptoms can be particularly complex.

“Typical problems that GPs and family doctors see in the UAE relate to non-communicable lifestyle diseases, but often symptoms are vague and non-specific, meaning that effective diagnostic tools are vital,” said Dr. Beejay.

“If a patient complains that he is always thirsty and visiting the rest room frequently, for example, are these symptoms of diabetes or are they just the effects of drinking too much coffee at home? Similarly, does a person with persistent headaches have high blood pressure, which is often a cause, or are there issues of an emotional nature relating to their life at home that are responsible?” he added.

Typical conditions covered in the lectures, which are divided into 30-minute presentations by specialists in their respective fields, include vertigo, palpitations, abdominal pain, diabetes, headache, depression, and lower back pain.

The experts will share their experiences with their colleagues to help identify the most effective treatment methods for the disorders that are commonly encountered within the region.

As with previous GP practice review seminars organised by SKMC – a hospital that is part of the SEHA Health System and is owned and operated by Abu Dhabi Health Services Company PJSC (SEHA), which is responsible for the curative activities of all the public hospitals and clinics in the emirate of Abu Dhabi – the conditions that will come under discussion will predominantly reflect the specific health issues of the UAE.

It is likely that diabetes, high blood pressure, and painful joints as a result of obesity will feature prominently in the presentations, as will conditions that relate to the time of year, such as allergic rhinitis caused by sand particles in the air, say the organisers.

“It’s vital that general practitioners working in the Abu Dhabi community have the opportunity to regularly get together and compare and contrast their differing experiences in the diagnosis and treatment of the most frequently presented conditions from patients,” said Dr. Beejay.

“Providing healthcare in the community setting is challenging, as clinics and GP surgeries have a large volume of people to treat and only a limited time to spend in a consultation for each patient. Finding ways to increase efficiency and improve the delivery of care in the community setting is, therefore, fundamental to good practice,” he added.

The General Practitioner and Family Practice Update Review will take place at the Dusit Thani Hotel in Abu Dhabi. Medical professionals working in the fields of family medicine, cardiology, respirology, gastroenterology, endocrinology, paediatrics, psychiatry and rheumatology, among others, will be attending with the aim of advancing the delivery of healthcare across the Abu Dhabi community.

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